Tourism win for Rockhampton

Owner Ann Augusteyn and General Manager Amanda Hinton received the Award at last Friday night’s 2014 Queensland Tourism Awards in Brisbane, endorsing the collective collaboration of industry, government and three regional tourism organisations under the Southern Great Barrier Reef destination brand.

I sincerely congratulate the team at Capricorn Caves for their fantastic win and also acknowledge the efforts of our other 2014 Capricorn region entrant, Big4 Capricorn Palms Holiday Village.  Entering the Awards is an extremely rigorous and time consuming process but an incredibly powerful business tool and I encourage more local operators to enter in 2015!

Other winners within the greater Southern Great Barrier Reefdestination were Peter Gash from Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort who won the Marie-Watson-Blake Award for Outstanding Contribution by an Individual; Bundaberg North Burnett Tourism won The Richard Power Award for Destination Marketing for their ‘Turtle Campaign’; Childers Eco Lodge won New Tourism Development and Lady Elliot Island won The Steve Irwin Award for Ecotourism.

The annual state tourism awards is hosted by the Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC) and presented by Queensland Airports Limited in partnership with Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ).  Awards presentations included 30 Gold, 28 Silver, 22 Bronze, two individual awards for outstanding achievements and one Commendation across 32 award categories, from a total of 189 nominations from entrants across Queensland.

The competition is of an extremely high standard (not all entries are finalists), so all award winners are to be absolutely congratulated!
State Tourism Minister the Hon. Jann Stuckey MP and QTIC Chairman Shane O’Reilly echoed the valuable qualities these people and businesses offer to this industry – passion, dedication and an unwavering enthusiasm for Queensland.

Gold winners from business categories in the 2014 Queensland Tourism Awards will gain automatic entry into the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards to be held in April 2015 in Adelaide.

Since 1985, the Queensland Tourism Awards have celebrated excellence in the tourism industry, which employs 235,000 Queenslanders and is the second largest export earner for the state which is why it is one of the four pillars of the Queensland economy.

In its 30th Anniversary year, this year QTIC produced a wonderful booklet celebrating the past three decades.  I am proud and thrilled that our very own Capricorn Coast Visitor Information Centre volunteers Beverley Gilligan and Trevor Belz (Trev is since retired) are featured for their 2011 win of Outstanding Contribution by a Volunteer or Volunteer Group in a photograph with former Premier of Queensland Anna Bligh.  In that same year, Capricorn Enterprise was awarded a commendation for Visitor Information and Services.  

Whilst few operators from the Capricorn Coast and greater Capricorn region have entered the state tourism awards since 2011, I think our collective new year’s resolution should be to ensure our operators, festivals and events, volunteers and local government in our destination submit a record number of entries in 2015!

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